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A Good Day to Die Hard/Rated R for violence, violence and more violence. Also for violence.

When the original James Bond film version of Thunderball was released in 1965, the super spy was known in many countries as Mr. Kiss, Kiss, Bang, Bang. The original soundtrack, with music by the late, great John Barry, had a track with the same title. The new Bruce Willis shoot-‘em-up leaves out the kissing but may establish BW as Mr. Bang, Bang, Boom, Boom.

The plot concerts the troubles of BW’s son, Jack, who is imprisoned in Russia for assassinating a bad guy. The story begins with John McLane traveling to Moscow to get his kid out of jail. It turns out that his son is a CIA operative in the middle of an assignment. Getting caught is part of the assignment. His dad arriving is not.

Like the other Die Hard films, where BW goes, trouble follows. The trouble in AGDTDH involves explosions, shootings, stabbings, car crashes and death in every violent form imaginable. Once each scene has ended, the characters make witty remarks for about three minutes while moving to a different location. Then the violence starts again.

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The violence and action are beautifully staged and brilliantly choreographed. The car chases are as good as any filmed to date. Unfortunately the weak story line, which is like a Dick, Jane and Spot story, keep bringing the overall effect of the film down to no more than average. Still, it’s highly entertaining if you enjoy big action scenes of destruction and death. Since the death is, for the most part, only done to impersonal bad guys, who remain almost entirely faceless, it doesn’t seem to matter.

The first of the Die Hard films was terrific entertainment. The next couple of films were not so good. The last Die Hard film in 2007 was well-plotted and had good characterization, which added to the fantastic scenes of violence and death. The newest entry seems to be action scene ideas that were left over and un-filmed from all the other entries that they shot, and thrown together to provide a vehicle for Bruce Willis to continue the series. You know him as Mr. Bang, Bang, Boom, Boom.

Rated 2.5 out of 4.0 reasons to bet more bang, bang, boom, boom on the way.

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